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December 2008

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A Perfect Gap - Documentary on Protection over Alangyi Ancient Trail

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The long east coast is often heard of continuous wave sound.
Advancing along the coastal highway around the island, one is caught in a disconnected road. Seldom visited by people, it preserves wonderful landscapes and natural resources. The highway improvement plan initiated by Directorate General Highways in 2006 woke up long asleep Alangyi Ancient Trail. The fight between protection of a pure land and convenience began.
Long lasting ancient memory
The Alangyi Ancient Trail between the ocean and the mountain is a section of the Langciao (old name for Hengchun Peninsula) Beinan Ancient Trail. 12km in length, it is also the only gap on Tai Route 26, the highway around Taiwan, that has not been connected. (Alangyi is the old name for Anshuo Village in Taitung County and the Trail is between the Peninsula and Anshuo).
In as early as the 16th century, when Taiwan was not yet invaded by out-comers, this road was already an important east-west passage for aboriginals. Between 1877 and 1885,when the Sino-French War broke out, contemporary government was engaged in construction of roads and the trail became important for the military and settlers. The change of the military center and to facilitate military defense drove the Japanese to blow the trail near Mudan Bay, accidentally enabling preservation of original landscapes on the trail. Without artificial developments and human activities, one sees dangerous beaches and natural rocks relating people to the difficulties encountered by our ancestors besides ancient military forts, electrical polls, adjacent coconut crops, and artificial forests on some hills. This becomes the inerasable memory left with this trail.
Smooth and white cobbles mark the entrance of the Alangyi Trail.
  • upper: The long east coast is often heard of continuous wave sound./ by Guang-jhih Hong
  • lower: Smooth and white cobbles mark the entrance of the Alangyi Trail./ by Guang-jhih Hong

Acknowledgement/ Ms. Cyong-yao Lin, Kenting National Park Headquarter
Translation/ James Chang
Photos/ Guang-jhih Hong, Cang-rong Syue

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